Communication without Communicating

I have not set eyes on one of my friends for the past 18 months or so. Yet we live in the same city of Lagos.

We do communicate, though.

Yes, we do.

We call each other once a while.

We exchange text messages.

And we chat on BB most of the time.

What a life!

And what a way to communicate!

That’s what communication has become.

That’s what modern gadgets have turned us into.

I believe I’m not alone in this strange way of communicating. I call it strange because we have somehow submitted ourselves to the rule of electronic devices.

Where goes the face-to-face communication method of old?

We think that modern technology now brings us closer as we can communicate with each other by a click of buttons. If you take a deeper look, you would discover that we are actually distancing ourselves from one another.

In case you don’t understand what I’ve just said, let’s consider a couple of questions.

When last did you visit your mum at home?

You phone her daily, right?

When last did you see your major client in the office?

You exchange emails every week, I believe?

Experts tell us that body language speaks louder than voice. But how can you see my body language in a text message? How do you determine my facial expression in a phone conversation?

You ask your friend in a BB chat, “How are you?” and she replies, “I’m OK.”

But she’s gone leaner on account of illness. You can’t see that, can you?

Someone says “I love you” on phone, but his face says the direct opposite of that. In fact, Se lo yin imu si e. Sorry, I don’t know how to interpret that. Deception is clearly written on his face, but you can’t see it.

Bosses often complain that their subordinates are not doing what they’re told to do. They’re surprised that their instructions are not being carried out as expected.

How can the poor subordinate do what you want when instructions are by torrents of emails? What does he do when he doesn’t understand the words used in your BB messages?

Please don’t get me wrong. I communicate a lot by email so I’m not condemning the method.

But my point is that we should see one another the more!

How about inviting your subordinate for a chat in your office?

How about gathering your staff for a TGIF get-together?

How about meetings and review sessions?

OK, you leave home early and return late in the night when your children would have slept off. But you make up for this by phoning them ten times before closing from work.

Monday to Saturday, they don’t get to see you. But you’re always in touch on phone.

What kind of a parent are you?

Those children want to see you face-to-face. They want to hold you. They want to sit on your laps. They’re tired of your phone calls and text messages.

Get a life, man. You’re not communicating!

Melissa Brown of ItsJustLunch dating website was recently asked to speak about dating in the modern day, and she had this to say:

“You can’t make genuine connection with someone by texting, emailing, or friending. When you meet someone in person and share a meal together, you see how that person interacts with you and the people around you. You observe their body language and how they carry themselves. That’s where the true chemistry happens: face-to-face, one-on-one.”

Is someone still wondering why the number of breakups keeps increasing? Melissa has given a clue. I can only hope that every lover will take to her advice.

Communication without a face-to-face interaction is incomplete.

Let’s improve.


  1. Hi,

    Face-to-face communication as mentioned in this article is good but situation at times may not make it possible.

    Many factors such as distance, emotion and environmental condition may contribute to not communicating with each other face-to-face.

    To communicate better and more effectively in your relationship for instance, you don’t only have to talk. You can communicate in other ways- through your actions, and nowadays, electronically too (through email, Facebook, blogs, texting or Twitter). All too often, couples focus only on the talking aspect of their relationship, but your actions also speak loudly.

    Keeping in touch throughout the day or week through email or other electronic means also reminds the person you’re thinking about them and how important they are in your life. Even if such communications are mainly playful or inconsequential, they can help lighten your partner’s day and improve their mood.

    Some couples also find that using email or another method is easier to discuss emotional issues rather than trying to do so face-to-face. It’s something to consider if every time you try and bring up a particular topic with your significant other, it turns into an argument or they shy away from it. Email or texting may be a way of communicating about such matters more openly and directly.

    Nobody is a perfect communicator all the time. But you can work to become a better communicator by trying a few of these tips. They won’t all work, nor will they work all the time. Better communication, however, starts with one person making the effort to improve, which often encourages the other to come along for the ride.

    Let us communicate better.

    Dipo Anifowose